New memorial to would-be Hitler assassin

25th September 2008, Comments 0 comments

Over decades, Germany has only gradually come round to viewing the would-be assassins as heroes.

Berlin -- A memorial went up Wednesday in Berlin to a German, Georg Elser, who tried single-handedly to halt the Second World War in November 1939 by blowing up Adolf Hitler and his top aides.

Hitler and his friends unexpectedly left the Buergerbraeukeller beer hall in Munich just before the explosion, which killed eight people. Elser was arrested, tortured and murdered at Dachau by the Nazis six years later.

The bust of Elser was put up at private expense on a riverside near the Interior Ministry in Berlin. A plaque in his memory was put up several years ago in his hometown, Koenigsbronn, in southwestern Germany.

The German Resistance Memorial movement said the bombing and a bomb set by Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg in 1944 which slightly wounded Hitler were the only assassination attempts that ever put Hitler in danger.

A foundation established by a businessman, Ernst Freiberger, paid for the bust.

Elser, a wood-joiner of strongly anti-Nazi views, planted the bomb alone in a bid to stop the war.

Over decades, Germany has only gradually come round to viewing the would-be assassins as heroes. A film, Valkyrie, set for American release in December, will depict the 1944 plot with Tom Cruise playing Stauffenberg.

DPA/Expatica

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